Founding Fathers Black Hills

Buried at the bottom of the sea


What do the Bermuda Triangle and the Declaration of Independence have in common?
Mr. Thomas Lynch, that’s what.

Or rather, that’s who. Lynch was a young man from South Carolina who had been appointed to take his ill father’s place in Philadelphia at the 2nd Continental Congress in 1776. Because his father had suffered a stroke, the younger Lynch got the chance to vote for independence and sign the famous document at the young age of 26. Sadly, his life would end just three years later at age 30 when the ship he was sailing on to Europe was lost at sea — somewhere in the Caribbean in the area known as the Bermuda Triangle, of all places. The ship disappeared without a trace and was never recovered.
But enough about his death. Today is Lynch’s birthday. He was born on Aug. 5, 1749, at Prince George’s Parrish in South Carolina to a wealthy plantation family and was educated in England, where he spent nearly a decade before returning to America to get politically involved in its independence movement.
Lynch was the second youngest signer of the Declaration of Independence and he was the youngest of the 56 signers to die. Here at Founding Fathers Black Hills, we like to call him the “signer who is buried at the bottom of the sea.” And to be honest, he has the ability to look like he’s staring back at you from the bottom of the ocean, instead of the inside of Independence Hall. Stop by while you’re in the Black Hills on vacation and learn some of the fascinating stories we have to tell about the other signers, as well. It’s one of the best things to do while you’re visiting Rapid City.